Presidential Issues, No Candidates Necessary ? for Now
Summit Goal: Wage, Justice Issues Should Shape Coming Iowa Campaign
Who says you need presidential candidates to talk political issues in Iowa?
Former U.S. Labor Secretary Robert Reich will keynote a Working Families Summit scheduled for Saturday, May 16, in Ames.
The event, coordinated by several progressive, labor and advocacy organizations, is free and open to the public ? though space will be limited and reservations are required.
"Remember, candidates and ultimately presidents work for us," said Ken Sagar, president of the Iowa Federation of Labor, AFL-CIO, a leading sponsor of the May 16 event in Ames.
"Our Working Families Summit is designed to bring together progressive Iowans and progressive ideas, so more Iowans and political candidates at all levels better understand the issues that are critical to working families.
"This is especially important with a presidential campaign already underway in our state, and big choices ahead in 2016 up and down the ballot."
The Summit will run from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at the Scheman Building at Iowa State University, with morning remarks from Larry Cohen, president of the Communications Workers of America (CWA); Sarita Gupta, executive director of Jobs with Justice; and Tefere Gebre, executive vice president, AFL-CIO.
Breakout sessions will focus on many hot-button topics for working families: wages, work supports such as child care and paid medical leave, retirement, education, civil rights and current political attacks on workers.
The event will close with Reich's keynote and remarks by Sagar.
"Iowans will have plenty of time between now and next February to meet with and hear from candidates for president," Sagar said. "What we need now is a common agenda on issues ranging from our low wages, to how to better support families and protect civil rights."
No presidential candidates will be speaking at the event ? though any are welcome to attend.
"This will be a great opportunity for presidential candidates to hear the concerns about concrete issues facing Iowa's working families," Sagar said.
Sponsors include the AFL-CIO along with many Iowa labor and advocacy organizations focused on concerns for working families in Iowa: Iowa Federation of Labor; AFSCME Iowa Council 61; Iowa Building and Trades Council; Communications Workers of America (CWA), Iowa Postal Workers Union (APWU), League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC), Iowa State Education Association (ISEA), Iowa Citizen Action Network (ICAN), Americans for Democratic Action (ADA), Laborers International Union of Northern America (LIUNA), Iowa Alliance for Retired Americans (ARA), Progress Iowa, Iowa Policy Project, Center for Worker Justice of Eastern Iowa, Iowa Community Action Association, American Friends Service Committee, American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE), South Central Iowa Federation of Labor, Move On, United Auto Workers (UAW), Working America, AFGE, UFCW, UAW, APWU Local 44, IUPAT, NALC, IBEW, USW, IAMAW, UE, Alliance for American Manufacturing, Mid-Iowa Community Action, and Make it Work.
Members of the public are welcome and admission is free, but a donation of non-perishable food items is requested. To register for the summit, go to progressiowa.org/workingfamiliessummit, and for more information, visit the Working Families Summit page on Facebook.
Free round-trip bus service to the event is available from the Quad-Cities, Iowa City, Cedar Rapids, Dubuque, Manchester and Evansdale. To reserve a bus seat, call 309-738-3196 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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